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Winter Preparedness Information
Emergency Mgmt
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Winter Preparedness Information

As winter approaches, it’s time to check your supplies and add to your emergency kit (

o Rock salt or more environmentally safe products to melt ice on walkways. Visit the Environmental Protection Agency ( for a complete list of recommended products.
o Sand to improve traction.
o Snow shovels and other snow removal equipment.
o Sufficient heating fuel. You may become isolated in your home and regular fuel sources may be cut off. Store a good supply of dry, seasoned wood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove.
o Adequate clothing and blankets to keep you warm.

Make a Family Communications Plan ( Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency, especially when phones are down or closed roads.
• Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio or other local news channels for critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS). Be alert to changing weather conditions.
• Minimize travel. If travel is necessary, keep a disaster supplies kit in your vehicle. Stock up on food & supplies beforehand bad weather so you don’t have to travel during a storm.
• Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.

Winterize Your Home
• Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing. Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing.
• All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear.
• Keep fire extinguishers on hand, and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them. House fires pose an additional risk, as more people turn to alternate heating sources without taking the necessary safety precautions.
• Learn how to shut off water valves (in case a pipe bursts).

Preparing for Loss of Power:
Primary concerns are loss of heat, power and telephone service and a shortage of supplies if storm conditions continue for more than a day.
• Extra food and water such as dried fruit, nuts and granola bars, and other food requiring no cooking or refrigeration.
• Flashlight and extra batteries
• Extra prescription medicine
• Baby items such as diapers and formula
• First-aid supplies
• Heating fuel: refuel before you are empty; fuel carriers may not reach you for days after a winter storm
• Emergency heat source: fireplace, wood stove, space heater, properly ventilated to prevent a fire
• Extra pet food and warm shelter for pets
• Snow can be melted for an additional water source.
• If you lose your heat, seal off unused rooms by stuffing towels in the cracks under the doors. At night, cover windows with extra blankets or sheets.
• Battery-powered NOAA Weather Radio and portable radio to receive emergency information
• Fire extinguisher, smoke alarm; test smoke alarms once a month to ensure they work properly.

After an Outage
• Be extra cautious if you go outside to inspect for damage after a storm. Downed or hanging electrical wires can be hidden by snowdrifts, trees or debris, and could be live. Never attempt to touch or moved downed lines. Keep children and pets away from them.
• Do not touch anything power lines are touching, such as tree branches or fences. Always assume a downed line is a live line. Call your utility company to report any outage-related problem such as downed wires.
• Throw away any food that has been exposed to temperatures 40° F (4° C) for 2 hours or more or that has an unusual odor, color or texture. When in doubt, throw it out!

Vehicle checklist
Plan your travel and check the latest weather reports to avoid the storm! Fully check and winterize your vehicle before a winter storm. Carry a Winter Survival Kit:
• Mobile phone, charger, batteries
• Cutting device
• Back up if phone is down - Compass and road maps
• High-calorie, non-perishable food
• Full tank of gas
• Extra clothing to keep dry
• New wiper blades
• Small can and waterproof matches to melt snow for drinking water
• Blankets/sleeping bags
• Sack of sand or cat litter for traction
• Flashlight with extra batteries
• Shovel
• First aid kit
• Windshield scraper and brush
• Tow rope
• Tool kit
• Battery booster cables
• Water container
• Make sure all vehicle lights are working
• Top off antifreeze levels

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